This year Pins and Needles (an Initial J Event) was held the weekend before last at Newcastle Race Course.
This is an event that I always attend and tend to stock up on good local produce. This year there were lots and lots of papercraft exhibitors and the sewing and knitting folks were in the minority. With the event being called Pins and Needles and having a quilting exhibition, and needlework exhibition on show I was a little disappointed not to have more relevant stalls. I did however come across a new exhibitor who was selling some delicious local wool Natural Knits, The Knitting Gift Shop.
They have an online shop and you can find them here.
I did snaffle up a few bits from Woolaballoo, a lovely wool supplier from Hexham and I have made myself a very quick neck warmer (crap photos but it's more mustard than green in real life). I am not the fastest knitter and I managed to knit this up one evening after work (part of the cost went to children in need too).
How cool is the huge button, I swapped the button from the kit with this one which I bought from The Knitting Gift Shop, the lady tells me her husband made these from the leg of an old chair.
This year one of the workshops was Tunisian Crochet, this is something I was really interested in. I can knit and crochet but this is a technique I have never tried before, so I signed up.
Its a bit odd if you are used to crochet. In traditional crochet, you work a row of stitches, and the row is then complete. At that point, you turn the work and move on to the next row. Tunisian crochet is different, each row is a two-step process, and you never have a need to turn the work. I got myself a bit confused at the end of each row but with a bit of practice and a lovely helpful teacher, I nailed it (I did frog it and start again when I got home and got it right).
If you are interested there are loads of good YouTube tutorials showing how it is done the tool is a cross between a knitting needle and a crochet hook. The finished article is very thick it is like double thickness crochet, if you need this dense finish Tunisian may be the way forward. As a result of this thickness, the Tunisian uses up lots of wool, I can’t imagine making a full size blanket in this way if for no other reason than the excessive cost of the wool but I hope to make a cushion cover sized piece from patchwork Tunisian squares in the future. I will add that to my ever growing list of things I want to make.